Thursday, March 15, 2018

Nothing Changes if You Don't Choose Something Different

I have wanted something different for myself career wise for some time now. What exactly is where I seem to change my mind with the change of the wind direction. In the past two to five years I have considered doing courses to become a childbirth educator and lactation consultant to work with new mothers, I have considered going into the restaurant business with my husband, I've considered getting a second Masters to become a school library media specialist to possibly work in even an elementary school, I've considered looking into revisiting my current masters to see what I need to do to get my official counseling certification, I even briefly considered a PhD in women and family studies as I always said if I was going to go back to school it might as well be for a PhD at this point, I've considered sticking with teaching but moving towards part time to the point of working 2-3 days a week on an A/B block schedule and working on my writing, and we have looked into doing a 1-2 year out of the country teaching assignment. By considering all of these I mean I have emailed and contacted people about programs and steps forward. For all of them. I have folders of notes and action plans for a good half of them too. As of last month I was halfway through the hiring process with an investment firm right here in the town where I live with the opportunity to be running my own office within five years. Though I kindly declined the offer to pursue the opportunity I was left with an open invitation to let them know if I changed my mind.

So what am I going to do? So many options so just choose one already, right? It's kind of like being 17 again though. But this time I have adult things on my mind- like money. How much income will I lose and how do we account for that? How much will it cost to get all new certifications and qualifications to do something different? What is the max potential income and if I can make what I make now how long until I reach that?

What about health insurance? I've carried ours for the past eight years as my husband's position is paid for out of Title I funds so how much will that cost us to pick it up elsewhere? Will it be anywhere as good as what we have? Will my husband possibly ever be able to carry the insurance and if so when?

What about my time? This is as huge of a consideration as money. Am I going to lose time at home with my family? Will this give me the opportunity to be home more with my family? Will this offer me flexibility with my time to be there for the endless things that come up with kids?

Purpose, satisfaction, and happiness- these things matter to me in what I do with my work time. I have always loved to work. I love the sense of accomplishment and purpose with working. I don't do it just to make money. I like to do something that's with people- helping and/or serving people.  Even when I was 16 working at the Dari B, I loved the opportunity to serve my beloved community their favorite treat 🙂 So how could this choice or that choice give me a sense of purpose and satisfaction? In what ways will it make me happier? In what ways will it make me less STRESSED? Is it going to be more stress at first because adjusting to change- even change you want- is usually a lot of hard, stressful work in the beginning? If so, how long until I'm settled and comfortable in my changed situation?

For years it's been let me pay more things off, let me build up more of a nest egg of back up funds, let me wait until my husband figures out what he's doing next, let me wait until the kids are a bit older, especially if it involves a lot of work time from me at first.

But I hate being in limbo. I hate waiting; though I've been waiting a long time for this. So last week I made a decision. I talked to our Human Resource office and switched the intent on my teaching contract for next year to part time! Now, before I get too overly excited about this, I can't do my desired straight part time where I work 2-3 days yet, but I can swing what's considered a .7 or .8 in which rather than working 7 hours every day I'd work more like 5.  My ideal hope with this is I could work something like 930-230 or 10-3 rather than my current 730-230. If I could get luck on my side and end up in a school a half hour closer to my house I could gain three hours a day back at home to hopefully balance this working mom life thing a little better. I'd be the one home with the kids in the morning, even getting them on the bus, and I'd still be back home like I am now by the time they got off the bus at 4. But rather than going to bed by 10 for my 545 alarm I could stay up until 1130 due to a 730 alarm. My hope then is to use my extra time to first pursue monetizing my writing more. There is this online writing course, strictly for writing content for motherhood websites and magazines, that I've been wanting to take so I plan to start there. I could very well fail at the writing for steady income thing, but at least I'd know I tried, and while I'm trying I have my new Thirty-One business to carry the income I hope to eventually replace with a steady writing income.

If that did fail I think I'd use my time as all my kids got into school to go back to school myself- whether it'd be to become a school library media specialist, get my PhD in women and family studies, check into what to do to get my official counseling license,  or get my certification to become a childbirth educator and lactation consultant- my 36 year old self isn't exactly sure but maybe my 40 year old self will have a better idea of what she wants to do/be when she grows up. By then maybe my husband will decide he wants to teach out of the country or hire me as his business financial manager as he starts a restaurant.

Now in order for this to work the way I hope the trick is I now have to find a school that has the part time position I'm looking for. These positions are HARD to find, but when they are there I imagine they are also hard to fill. I have the next four months to find this ideal part time position that I'm looking for. I also plan on applying to a neighboring county in hopes of widening my search net. But then come the first of July, if I haven't found the part time position I'm looking for, I am reconsidering the investment firm's offer. Though it'll be a tough transition at first and demand a lot of my time because they do pay for me to study, train, and take their certification courses; within a year I cannot only be settled into it, be working a much more flexible schedule right here in town where my kids are and able to put them on the bus in the mornings, but making the same if not more money than I already do. There are pros and cons to both, and though I like the long range potential of working with the investment firm, my hope is to first have the opportunity to see what teaching part time is like for me as it is hard to imagine my life without it. It may have it's incredibly stressful, thankless days but there are also many things I would miss about it.

I am gone ten hours a day right now from the time I leave shortly after 6 until I get home around 4. With three little kids at home, no family around for help, and a husband in a leadership position that has the same hours as me, I need to be more available to my family. I need more balance in my work/family life. I can't attempt to get that if I don't change anything so I hope switching my contract to part time is just the first step in making a choice to take a chance to try something different in hopes that I can find the change I've been looking for.

Wish me luck as I am a horribly impatient person when it comes to uncertainty and the unknown in situations like this and often make quick decisions that come from impatience rather than desire.


No comments:

Post a Comment